Docky Dates for your December Diary

B0y2PxWIYAAPaGXHow can it be December already?  Ignoring the rising panic that nothing is ready for Christmas yet, let us proceed to mark off some dates in the diary which will help with shopping, praying, celebrating and generally Christmasifising the next few weeks:

First up – shopping – have you marked the DOCK Market dates (Saturdays 6th, 13th and 20th Dec 11am-4pm; Thursdays 11th and 18th Dec 6-9pm) into your diary yet?  Remember, if you don’t find something for everyone on your list amongst our (booked-out!) range of market stalls, your cuppa is on the house!

B2A7cgTCMAEYiKg(There will also be Christmas markets during the festive flicks at the pop-up cinema in the pop-up market – extra seats have now been made available so Christmas Vacation, Die Hard and Muppet Christmas Carol are still up for grabs!)

Then – praying.  Because it’s VITAL to find spaces to pause, pray, ponder and prepare ourselves for something a bit deeper than a headlong dash to a turkey dinner.

11840045176_46a68a717f_zAnd so it’s perfect timing that the 24-7 Prayer baton, which started its year-long journey in DOCK Cafe at the stroke of midnight at the start of 2014, is returning for two days (and nights, hardcore) from 3:30pm on Sunday 7th December until 9am on Tuesday 9th December.


11839270965_b3f97bd93c_zTalk to anyone who called in for an hour or two during our 24-7 Prayer days at the start of the year and you’ll hear just how profound and peaceful those times of quiet in Dock Cafe were.  During the overnight stints the whole cafe will be turned into a series of interactive stations to prompt and inspire different types of prayer (and during the day when the cafe is open these will be concentrated in the Prayer Garden).  Sign up NOW on the timetable here before December gets too busy!

SN-a1Also on Sunday 7th December at 6pm we’ll be gathering in Dock Cafe for our last Sunday night service of 2014 – a chance to worship together and give thanks for an amazing year of growth and life in the Titanic Quarter.  (There may also be some hot punch and Christmas Carols).

And speaking of Christmas Carols, the next date for your diary is a biggie: Thursday 11th December at 5pm for the Dock’s now-traditional Christmas bash, A Titanic Christmas, which started four years ago as a handful of freezing people gathering around a brazier to meet their brand-new neighbours and drink mulled wine, and has grown over the years to incorporate flying Santas, candlelit carols, Christmas markets, nom-noms on Nomadic and more Christmassiness than you can shake a stick at:


Plus… watch out for the newly-decorated DOCK Cafe and DOCK Picnic after this weekend, a new and classy Christmas playlist (NO Slade or Band-Aid), hot punch on the menu, and much more…

Impossible to feel Bah Humbug in the middle of that lot!

Pop-Up Movies at the Pop-Up Market

Screenshot 2014-11-26 13.15.47What’s your favourite Christmas movie?  Retro (It’s A Wonderful Life), modern (Elf), slushy (Love Actually) or left-field (Die Hard)?  Does it have to have Santa (Miracle on 34th Street) or Muppets (Muppet Christmas Carol) to qualify as a proper Christmas classic?

Whatever your tastes, we’ve got you covered in the Titanic Quarter this B164NtHIIAAHL3M.jpg-largeChristmas.  The Dock’s very own pop-up DOCK Market (as well as running loads of market days to help you with your Christmas shopping – click here for details) is playing host to a brand new venture called Pop Up Film Club – showing big-screen Christmas movies in the midst of a Winter Wonderland every evening from 13th-21st December.


Click here for details of dates and films, or to book a ticket – and here’s the pitch:
B2A7cgTCMAEYiKgPop-Up Film Club presents a week-long Christmas extravaganza to set alight your festive spirit.  This is so much more than just watching a movie!  From the minute you arrive you will be welcomed through our Narnia inspired Wardrobe into our enchanting Winter Wonderland bedecked with snow, fairy lights and plenty of Christmas flavour.  Before you take a seat stroll through the Candy Cane Forest where you can try some of the finest gourmet food Belfast has to offer.  We bring the Christmas Market to you!

How can you resist?

PS – in case you didn’t catch the news on UTV last night, the Beach project wasn’t successful in attracting some of the People’s Millions – but huge thanks to all who voted and hearty congratulations to Charis Cancer Care, a very worthy winner.

Let’s build a beach!

UPDATE ON MONDAY: The voting phone lines are open from 9am today and close at midnight.  From landlines simply call 09015 228214 or from mobiles call 6228214. It only costs 15p from mobile & landlines and you can vote up to 10 TIMES (every one counts)

If you have no idea what these phone lines are for, read on…

Paris has the Paris Plage… Sydney has Bondi Beach… Portrush has the Strand…Isn’t it about time Belfast had a beach of its own?15701329541_5aa00a69d3

On Monday you’ll have the chance to vote for a cool new addition to 15192552134_fb854fffdcthe Titanic Quarter landscape.  Titanic Foundation, along with lots of support and enthusiasm from the whole Titanic Quarter community, have put in an application to the People’s Millions to build a beach right beside Titanic Belfast as a chilled-out community space and a fun place to relax and feel the sand between your toes:

The fund will help us ‘Build a Beach’ within reach located in the heart of Titanic Quarter creating a friendly, healthy place easy to get to on foot, bike, bus and car for our local residents, workers & students as well as visiting tourists. A safe place for neighbouring communities to bring their children to play, to socialize and of course enjoy ice-cream.Build a Beach Facebook cover

The Beach will be a venue for sporting, cultural and educational events and activities from beach volleyball to building giant sand castles to playing life size board games. There will be beach huts – a must for the Belfast climate. Plus the perfect location to welcome the arrival of the Tall Ships.Build a Beach Twitter banner

We will involve local people in summer beach activities, we will work with local schools in the design process and recruit, train and work with a team of volunteers who will help with regular beach maintenance and assist with the organisation of beach events and activities. A place that will engage with and attract local communities, providing a space that belongs to everyone.

15626670979_6d6e61ffc0If you think it’s a good idea, you have to lift the phone and vote on Monday 24th November – the People’s Millions are awarded according to a public vote and your call might make all the difference…

The phone number isn’t released until Monday morning – so check back here on Monday morning for the number and get dialling.  Each person is allowed to phone and vote 10 times (each call costs 15p).  So vote early, vote often!

IMG_0462And tune into UTV Live at 6pm on Monday night, where you’ll see some familiar faces (and some familiar deckchairs) from Dock-world involved in the filming of a promo for the beach – a chance for Dock volunteers, TQ residents, BMC students, local businesses and more to get behind a project we’re all really excited about.

15788825586_9f5aa9a784And d’you know, even though it was a freezing November morning, as soon as we walked onto our little mock-up beach, started building sandcastles (Siobhan’s were especially meticulous), slurping ice-creams and playing catch, everyone started to smile.

Beaches are good, and Belfast needs one!


Hello again

You might’ve noticed that this blog has been a bit quiet for a few days…  Taking a little bit of time out to grieve with my (much) better half Susan and her family on the death of her brother Stephen, a gent if ever there was one, and a great loss.

IMG_0455Just a quick post today to say my heartfelt and profound thanks to the Dock community, who gathered round, prayed, supported and loved us through the past few days.  What an immense thing, in the midst of a stressful time, to receive a text message from the Dock volunteer team telling me that all my shifts in Dock Cafe had been covered by other volunteers going above and beyond the call of duty, and I was NOT to come in to work under any circumstances!

Is The Dock a church? is a topic of much debate.  (Well, I say debate, I mean long rambling conversations at theological college coffee tables across the land.)  If a church is where you find the warmth and grace of God’s love expressed in the practical kindness of his followers – then The Dock has definitely, profoundly been our church over this past week.

Thanks everyone!


Wakeboarding Boobs

Well that’s fairly close to the top of the list of Blog Post Titles I Never Thought I’d Use – and indeed Sights I Never Thought I’d See…

Massive respect to Sally and the Cable and Wake gang for this subtle, dignified event at the Titanic Slipways today – just part of a jam-packed few days with the Boobettes who are here in Belfast on a mission to save some lives…

15588445367_d6c5abbb51_oThree of the team are alive today because they checked – so follow their example and check out (or chat to Wee Chat Buddy Diane) for more information.

And while you’re at it, click here for the full set of pictures from The Big Wooden Box